MAD Symposium


Our annual symposium, which started in 2011, to be the cornerstone of our organization. It is where we get the chance to draw together 600 people, including many of the world’s foremost chefs, producers, suppliers, thinkers, and activists. Under a big red tent in the city’s harbor, we curate a series of speakers from around the world. They present on everything from the latest developments in sustainable agriculture, inspiring other chefs to create positive change, to the science of flavor and creativity in the kitchen.


So far, we have held four symposiums, each with a distinct theme, such as vegetation, appetite, guts, and a reflective theme on what cooking means. Since 2011 over 100 talks have been presented at MAD Symposiums; all of them have been recorded and available for free here:


“We were never looking for success, we were looking for happiness, the success came later.” – Ferran Adrià

“Trust me: we know so little about flavor.” –Dan Barber

“The moment when humans learned to produce and dominate fire – to cook – was an authentic revolution.” – Stefano Mancuso

“I judge a restaurant based on its trash bin.” – Diane Kennedy

“The real value of MAD, I believe, lies in the dialogue that takes place once we all leave the stage.” – Wylie Dufresne

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About MAD

MAD (taken from the Danish word for “food”) is a not-for-profit organization that works to expand knowledge of food to make every meal a better meal; not just at restaurants, but every meal cooked and served. Good cooking and a healthy environment can and should go hand-in-hand, and the quest for a better meal can leave the world a better place than we found it. MAD is committed to producing and sharing this knowledge and to taking promising ideas from theory to practice.